Lil' but Mighty English Blog - Find Your Focus With Music

Get Into the Groove of Studying – Find Your Focus With the Right Playlist!

Hello, everyone! I’m Ms Genevieve, and I’m thrilled to share English tips and strategies with you on the Lil’ but Mighty blog. It’s already September and soon, it will be time again for the *dramatic gasp* year-end examinations. But it does not have to be all doom and gloom, does it? My post today will touch on how finding the right type of music can help ease the pain of having to revise for the examinations. In fact, it can help to boost your concentration and help you focus on your studies so that you have a higher chance of getting the grades you are aiming for! Let’s help you find your focus with music!

Music can’t give you more hours a day, but it can propel you into deep concentration. From offering you a confidence boost in the morning to helping you sleep at night, countless studies have shown that music can have a profound effect on both our emotions and body. However, choosing the right tracks to unlock your focus is key. To help you figure out what works best for you, I’ve provided some tips to help you curate your next study playlist.

What Genre of Music Should I Listen To?

While studies continue to attest to the mental and physical benefits of listening to music, there’s no straight answer for which genre is most effective. That said, listening to the same playlist as you study can prompt you to stay focused — think about how our brains are conditioned to respond to the beeping or buzzing sound of our mobile phones. The playlist that you create can activate your brain to switch to “study mode”, too.

Should I Include My Favourite Songs?

It’s tempting to listen to the music you love while studying. Although that might seem like an obvious choice, it’s essential to recognise that most pop songs are engineered to capture our attention and burrow through our minds like an earworm. Music with lyrics is not ideal when you’re trying to break down a comprehension question or write a composition. If you can’t resist the temptation to listen to your favourite track again, why not listen to it after you’re done with an assignment? After all, that would serve as a great reminder to take a short break after an extended period of deep concentration.Title

Here are some genres worth exploring on Spotify. If you don’t already have an account, you may want to sign up for a free account (with your parents’ permission, of course).

  1. Classical Music: this playlist features some of the most famous classical masterpieces. The languid melodies give your brain a boost and help you relax after a long day at school.
  2. Ambient Music: the undulations in ambient tracks can tune out distractions while focusing brainwaves. These carefully composed synthesiser sounds rise and fall, smearing time and space, making them an excellent choice for helping one find focus.
  3. Nature Sounds: sounds from nature such as birds chirping and leaves rustling can add a consistent mood to your environment. These tracks help you dive into deep concentration, especially if you’re easily distracted or find it difficult to concentrate in a tranquil environment.
  4. Cafe Music: if you find it easier to focus in a lively environment, then jazzy tracks could be a great study companion. The cosy environment of a coffee shop, coupled with a low level of background noise, allows you to settle into any task with ease.

Still Unsure?

If you’re still unsure about the ideal genre of music to take you through your study sessions, consider signing up for a trial on brain.fm. This application prides itself in working with experts such as neuroscientists, psychologists, and musicians to create optimal tracks that help you stay focused and productive.

Initially, I was sceptical about its claims. However, after trying it out for a week, I’ve realised that it helps me get through tasks – especially when searching for new ideas or working on a complex assignment.

The interface is beautifully designed and allows you to experiment with different genres and customise music according to your workflow. There’s also an in-built timer feature that tracks how long you’ve been focused if you’re tempted to indulge in Reddit or take a trip down the Google rabbit hole, the motivational quotes on the interface prompt you to think twice.

How Long Should My Playlist Be?

The duration of your playlist should be based on how long your study session is. Since it takes a while for your brain to settle into a task, it would be good to curate a playlist that’s about an hour long. Here’s a typical concentration cycle for effective studying:

While studying, if you realise that you can’t focus on a task for very long, don’t worry. Technology and society have trained our brains to make frequent switches between tasks. The trick is to start small and make steady progress by extending the duration of concentration. Mix up the tracks in your playlist to spice up the routine. You might even want to curate a short playlist to help you get through a simple assignment and a longer one for more complex tasks.

I hope this post has given you some ideas on how to get started on curating your very own study playlist. Do share your favourite creations with us in the comments section below. Until next time, please take care!


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Ms. Genevieve

Ms. Genevieve has been teaching at tuition centres for six years, specialising in creative writing. She continues to mine fascinating insights from advertising, pop culture, and music to liven up her classrooms. A firm believer that small steps can lead to remarkable results, she is excited to ignite a love for learning with her novel teaching approaches at Lil’ but Mighty.

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